MARTINSBURG, W.Va.-- As lawmakers in West Virginia prepare to head into the Upcoming legislative session, most say their top priority is balancing the budget.
In his 30 years serving Berkeley County, Delegate John Overington said 2014 will be the most challenging. He said the mountain state is expected lose revenue this year due to Maryland opening a new gambling venue. He also said the state economy will take a hit in the coal industry, after the EPA passed new regulations limiting carbon emissions from coal plants, which Overington says should be regulated by the state. He's going speaking with fellow delegates about opposing further federal government involvement in state matters."We get a billion dollars from the coal industry half a billion dollars from the severance tax, probably another half a billion dollars in taxes and fees, the coal industry generates for the state," said Delegate John Overington, (R-Berkeley) District 62. "The war on coal, the Obama Administration is imposing is costing West Virginia."
His other ideas to stabilize the economy include introducing a "Right to Work" bill, which would allow workers, not to join unions at their workplaces. Overington says that could attract more businesses to set up shop in West Virginia. The longtime delegate also says incentives should be offered to small businesses to help them thrive.
"We provide special incentives and tax breaks for large companies like Macys, Quad Graphics," says Overington. "We are glad they are here in Berkeley County but we need to offer those same incentives for small businesses."
He also wants to require random drug testing among people on welfare.
Overington is also going re-introduce a bill for capital punishment in the state.